Girls Basketball: Vashon wins a pair of league games

Elisa Wendt puts up a shot early in Wednesday’s Charles Wright basketball game. - Rik Forschmiedt photo
Elisa Wendt puts up a shot early in Wednesday’s Charles Wright basketball game.
— image credit: Rik Forschmiedt photo

The Pirates girls basketball team won twice last week, improving their record to 11-3.

They hosted league foes Charles Wright Academy on Wednesday and Chimacum High School on Friday.

Wednesday’s game with Charles Wright marked the midway point of Nisqually League play.

The game turned Vashon’s way early in large part due to a stingy Pirates defense that limited the visiting Tarriers to only 12 first half and 14 second half points.

The Pirate three-quarter court press appeared to frustrate the Tarrier ball handlers, but it was the defensive efforts in half court that made the biggest impact.

“Whether starters or reserves, I really liked our defensive energy tonight,” said Coach Henry Porter.

The Pirates had 21 team-wide steals (almost half of which came in half-court sets) led by Kiki Means (6), Cat Amick (4) and Chrissy Swope (4).

Vashon controlled the boards on both ends of the court as Swope (10) and Charlotte Kehoe (11) combined for 21 of Vashon’s 32 rebounds. Sophie Nespor added five boards for the Pirates.

The Pirates offensive effort was characteristically balanced with double-digit scoring efforts from Kelly Costello (12), Kehoe (12), Swope (11) and Means (11).

Amick and Elisa Wendt scored six points apiece, and freshman Kathrine Misel added four points to round out the Pirate scoring as the Pirates won their 10th game of the season.

The final score was Vashon 64, Charles Wright 26.

The second game of the week featured a return match against the Chimacum Cowboys.

This game in some ways looked like a carbon copy of the team’s effort against Charles Wright. The Pirates led early, collected 19 team-wide steals and disrupted the Cowboy offensive sets with energetic defensive play.

Ahead by only two points at the end of the first quarter, the Pirates rode an 18-5 run in the second to take a 30-15 lead into the half.

Vashon lost no momentum in the third quarter, extending its lead to 47-23 on the way to the team’s 11th win.

The final score was Vashon 56, Chimacum 37.

The scoring efforts were again balanced with three Pirates scoring in double figures. Costello and Wendt paced Vashon with 13 points apiece, while Swope added 11.

Means contributed nine points, going four for five from the field, and Kehoe tacked on six points.

Nespor had an outstanding night from the stripe, hitting all four of her free throws — none of which touched anything other than net.

“We have moments where our offensive execution is just great,” Porter said. “Our goal now is to string those moments together into longer stretches. If we can do this without losing our defensive intensity, then I like our chances against most teams.”

The Pirate girls are sitting in second place entering the second half of league play; they are one game behind Seattle Christian High School. The Pirates are expecting two difficult games this week. On Tuesday, the Pirates traveled to Puyallup to take on the Cascade Christian Cougars, a team that is currently third in the league standings, before returning home to play the Orting Cardinals, who are currently fourth in Nisqually 1A League standings.

— Gary Means is the father of Pirate Kiki Means.

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